In 2015, The Lutheran School Shepherd Award was established to honor pastors who have provided outstanding support and service to their Lutheran school or early childhood center. This annual award recognizes pastors who are engaged at a high level in a significant way in the school or early childhood center their congregation operates. With this recognition, we honor the many pastors who provide extraordinary support, service and encouragement for Lutheran elementary schools throughout the District.
Pastor Mark Johnson of Mt. Calvary Richfield and Mt. Calvary Preschool is this year's winner. Some quotes from people that nominated him:
“Pastor Johnson’s commitment of time and energy to the ministry of Christian education in our midst has been exemplary. His love of Christian education and recognition of its value has been demonstrated many times in word and deed.”
“Pastor Johnson’s door has always been open to teachers, children, parents, volunteers and other paid staff to hear a word of concern, offer a word of comfort, or say yes to helping.”
“He is a “down to earth man” who has a sense of humor and is an “all around nice guy”.
“Pastor Johnson greets the children and tries to learn their names and he likes to strike up conversations with the parents while they wait for their child to be dismissed. It warms my heart to see Pastor’s interactions with the children.“
“He takes time every Tuesday morning to lead the preschoolers in chapel. Chapel makes a huge impression on the children because Pastor dresses in his full Sunday garments and lights the altar candles. Those two simple actions help show the children how much respect and reflection we are to give while attending church.”
“Pastor Johnson has always been there for me when I’ve needed him. He has sat with me while I’ve opened the flood gates of tears due to personal trials and professional frustrations. I always feel guilty that I’ve come undone in front of him but he always shares the most perfect, calming words from God that help me through the particular situation. Pastor is the best “sounding board” and I feel much support from him.”
“We are very, very blessed to have Pastor Johnson as our shepherd."